This list will discuss those cultural cornerstones under the simple word, ‘trends.’

Here is a list of the top 7 social media trends of 2018;

1. Na Dem Dey Rush Us

You know how human beings love feel-good things. #NaDemDeyRushUs was the fuel to feel-good clouds in 2018; a harmless line off the lips of Nollywood actor, Charles Inojie was somehow traced by the finicky microscopes of millennials, reverse-engineered and weaponized for the most viral social media trend of 2018; it transcended Twitter and took Facebook and Instagram like Kourtney and Khloe took Miami, circa 2009.

First off, nobody is rushing you if you are not rich or beautiful in the real world, but we can all dare to dream. In the clip, the line was picked off a man who spoke the line to boost his chances of getting a girl that was definitely out of his league; a clear dream. While nobody is rushing some people, the key is to never stop dreaming.

It was a key moment in self-empowerment that resonated with everyone and who can blame millennials, we’ve been through a lot; even our supposed President called us, “lazy.”

The game is the game and that’s why we needed an avenue to channel some positive energy. Shout-out to all Nigerian millennial who needs a voice to tell him it gets better because it does.

2. Small Girl, Big God

Small Girl, Big God went from an empowerment slogan to a slur 
Small Girl, Big God went from an empowerment slogan to a slur 

In July 2018, Pulse discussed the social media trend and called it “An online victory for women,” and it was.

This phrase developed in three phases; the first was used to describe petite, adorable women. The second was weaponized and changed by men to signify promiscuity in peng women. The third phase, which we saw in 2018 was women taking the power back.

And boy, did they take it? They absolutely killed the trend and for once, The phrase was one of the most powerful girl-trends of 2018, even haters couldn’t hate.

Here's to haters
Here's to haters

3. Everywhere Stew

Asides social media though, where ‘Everywhere Stew’ continued to roll in on pictures of the interested parties, nobody could care less. But there, everyone wanted to be the stew to someone’s rice, even though some were too spicy and salty to every stand a chance. The idea might seem self-empowerment, but it came from vanity and to vanity it returned.

ALSO READ: Top controversial moments in Nigerian culture

4. Sho Mo Age Mi Ni

I think we all agree that the Nigerian dream is to travel to a western colony and wax lyrical about one supposed unending love for Nigeria off Twitter, come back five years later and scream, ‘Sho mo age mi ni’ at everyone. Basically, it’s Yoruba language from Nollywood actor Kazeem Abimbola, popularly called Jigan Babaoja and its simple English translation is, ‘Do you know my age?

Honestly, the question or phrase is a cliché of Yoruba-Nollywood and Yoruba homes. It is like a recovery package to re-summon ego when a particular person is belittling you. Africa places a premium on respect and the concept of ‘disrespect,’ and that gave this phrase weight overtime.

5. Sweet Boys Association

When this trend became a hit, Pulse wrote, “Women owned small girl, big god back, “Na dem dey rush us” became of more popular demand than gold circle condoms and men were still scum and trash — men needed to find a happy slang/hashtag to restart the fires of male relevance on social media.

“Enter, the multi-talented, multi-functional creative, Folarin Falana, also known as, Falz to save the day with another widely relevant trend for us to munch like a pack of sugary plantain chips by tired Lagosians in traffic. Sweet Boys Association is Falz’s gift to men on social media.

“Like anything related to Falz, it has since created a storm on social media that looks set to be another weapon in the near-perpetual gender war. Even when Falz does not intend it, his products create a storm — it seems.”

SBA was a moment that men truly owned their need for empowerment for what they are. Falz’s SBA carefully handpicked the men who truly shone for what they simply are; men - and also created a standard of decency for his inductees.

6. #WeAreNigerianCreatives

A lot of Nigerian creatives are hustlers with great dreams and repertoire. This trend wouldn’t usually come to mind whenever you think about key trends and hashtags, but it has trended for the better part of eight months in Nigeria.

Some of the best Nigerian creatives are unknown and they needed to showcase themselves, thus they created where they posted their work with the #WeAreNigerianCreatives and it became a masterstroke that showcased some of the previously hidden talents we possess in this country. One of them was Awele Emilli.

These creatives include artists, 3D artists, painters, make-up artists, sculptors, graphic designers, illustrators and so forth.

ALSO READ: Top 5 viral photos of 2018 (Nigeria)

7. #TwitterVAR

Use: It depends, but it’s usually for self-empowerment or pure jokes.

Weaponized for gender wars: Not that I know of, but there’s still time.

In a year with numerous trends, some very funny one-liners went under the radar; plis dear which was the second funniest trend to connote sarcastic fatigue upon requests, lazdent, a Yoruba portmanteau of ‘Ni accident’ which means to have accident was used to create hilarious shades of supposed bad things; #TweetLikeKaro, which had women take self-love to another level with some serious bars and wordplay on show.

Assurance, another commendable roll-out that focused on celebrating Davido’s love for Chioma had everyone wanting to fall in love… with rich people, Thank you for coming to my TED Talk, which helped people canvas mad opinions and Twitter VAR, which was simply messy.